Reasons to Go to College: Determining if College is Necessary

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There is a long time discussion on if college is necessary to be successful. As time as gone on from the 1900’s to the 2000’s many people have gone to college to get a job. Now there are many people that do not go to college and are very successful. There are other alternatives that others use like trade school that instead let people work hands on and still make a good living. Many people are going into fields they do not enjoy and end up miserable after college. But there are always pros and cons to this question. There are many ways a college degree can help you besides getting a job it could help socioeconomically..

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There are many pros to college and how it allows people succeed better than people without a degree. A degree can increase your income and help your resume. The Bureau of Labor Statistics says more education correlates with better income. For example a person over the age of 25 with a bachelor’s degree earned $1137 a week while people with a high school diploma only earned $678 on average in 2015. Getting a degree can allow you to get a higher position in a job and also help your resume especially if the job does not require a degree. A college degree is also great for networking. While at college you are meeting a lot of new people and professors that have a lot of experience in the field you would like to pursue. That brings me to another pro is that college allows you to be flexible with what career path you would like to pursue. If you do not know exactly what you want to do in college you are allowed to scope a bunch of different majors. While someone without a degree may go down a career path they do not like and are forced to do it.

Most jobs in 2019 require a bachelor’s as a minimum and some want a graduate degree. It seems as a bachelor’s degree has taken the role of a high school diploma 20 and 30 years ago as a minimum. Now if you are wanting to be a lawyer or doctor a bachelors is a prerequisite to getting these graduate level degrees. But for many jobs with a bachelors your not just doing it to get a piece of paper college teaches you critical thinking skills and knowledge from professors with lots of experience which is required to not just get but keep a job. College is also getting more affordable and allowing people who are not financially stable to attend. Community college and state schools are still great education and have a lower price tag then a private institute. And colleges offer lots of financial aid and scholarships to those with good grades.

With a college degree you have a better rate of being unemployed after getting a job. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, people with a bachelor on average 2.2 percent of workers got unemployed while 4.1 percent were unemployed without a degree. A report from the Lumina Foundation states people with a bachelor’s degree are 9.4 times more likely to get a bank account than those without a degree. It is proven that people with a college degree are more likely to be homeowners. A person with a college degree is more like to be a homeowner and married. A 2016 zillow report says that 75 percent of homeowners were college graduates compared to 11 percent who had a high school diploma and 14 percent who went to college but did not finish. And for the marriage side a 2015 Pew Research report found that 65 % of adults age 25 and older with a bachelor’s degree and more were married in 2014 compared to the 53 % with less education. Also a report from the National Center for Health Statistics found that 78% of women with a college degree married in 2006-2010 for the first time could expect a marriage lasting at least 20 years while a women with less could expect a 40% chance of that happening.

Earning a college degree could also allow you to live longer with healthier habits than those without it. According to the Lumina Foundation there is a decrease in daily smoking with people with higher education. It shows 20 percent of people with no college education smoked daily while 5% did with a bachelor’s and also 3 % with a graduate degree. It also showed how people with a college degree had better eating habits and exercised more frequently than those without it. This also relating to happiness 94 % of people with a college degree compared to 89% without a college degree reported to be happy according to the Lumina Foundation.

Now there is a big discussion on the main differences of getting a bachelor’s degree vs a masters degree and doctorate. It is proven that people with masters degrees earn more than people with a bachelor’s and people with a doctorate make 20,000 to 30,000 more than both. According to BLS in 2016 a person with a bachelor’s degree earned an average weekly paycheck of $1137 and a person with a masters degree earned on average $1341. A person with a doctorate degree earned around $1664 weekly as well. This shows how getting a higher education correlates to a higher salary.

A college degree besides the fact that it does help get a job helps with Socioeconomic status. In our generation today many people correlate success with money. Getting a college degree is proven to make you more money and keep a job longer than without it. A college degree also correlates to keeping a healthy relationship. Going to college allows for you to network with a lot of industry professionals and will in turn help you get a job. It also allows you to be flexible with your career path and choose something you actually would like to do. And it is also proven that if you have a college degree you will make healthier decisions. College is an investment that gives people the freedom to be who they want to be and to live the life they want.   

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